Adult Business Battle
Residents cancelled the meeting because, they said, the store's owner threatened them. The store, Shakel's Secret, is on Arden Drive which, neighbors said, is too close for comfort.
Their quiet neighborhood just outside Jefferson City includes other businesses, such as a jewelry store and two daycare centers, that operate out of homes. Then, the adult novelty store opened just a few houses from the two daycares.
"My main concern is that, with this type of business on our street, it will bring in sex offenders," complained Cynthia White, one of the daycare owners.
Neighbors want to meet with Jefferson City officials to talk about annexing their neighborhood, so the city's zoning laws would force out the adult business. But, officials said the adult business would be grandfathered in, even if the city annexes the area.
Ralph and Libby Webb planned to host the meeting in their home. They cancelled it after they said several people received threatening phone calls, including one against the Webbs' grandchildren. Cole County Sheriff Greg White confirmed that someone made a threatening call from a nearby payphone.
Shakel's owner, Mike Barnard, said he's a law-abiding citizen. He denied threatening anyone and said he didn't even know about the meeting.
"If that's a fact, if someone called somebody, they should quit," he said. "They should just stop."
The sheriff recommended residents form a neighborhood watch to keep an eye on things.